Cinnamon honey shortbread

If there is one thing I love eating during the festive season, it’s shortbread. Though the shop bought stuff is tasty, I do love to make my own as it is so simple and fills the house with tempting smells; it’s hard not to eat it straight from the oven! I have to say, it doesn’t last long though; it’s just so moreish, isn’t it?

Leisure Cookers have asked me to put a Christmas twist on one of my favourite recipes, to coincide with the Tribe to Table foodie trends. Being a keen baker, I chose the sugar free baking trend; saying that, this recipe isn’t completely sugar free, but refined sugar free instead, as honey replaces the usual sugar.

I turned to my go to shortbread recipe and thought about how I could make it refined sugar free. Obviously I wanted it to still be sweet, and honey is a store cupboard staple that is deliciously so with a very distinctive flavour. I was a bit dubious as to how it would work in the shortbread, but after some research as to how to replace sugar with honey in a recipe, I managed to get a pretty good shortbread dough.

The shortbread still tastes sweet, buttery, and crumbly; but instead of an overly sweet sugary taste, it has a delicious honeyed flavour. Whilst shopping I actually discovered honey with a hint of cinnamon, and I thought that would be a great Christmas twist. The cinnamon flavour is just noticeable in the shortbread, but there is such a distinctive taste of honey that I think I will actually use this recipe in future; it’s delightful!


Ingredients (makes 20-24)

  • 125g soft butter
  • 70g Rowse’s honey with a hint of cinnamon (or you could just use normal runny honey)
  • 180g plain flour
  • pinch of baking powder


  • Preheat oven to gas 4/180c/350f, and line a tray with baking paper.
  • Beat the butter and honey until smooth and creamy.
  • Mix in the flour and baking powder to create a smooth dough. I find getting my hands stuck in is the best way!
  • The dough will be a little sticky so form into a rectangle block, wrap in cling film, and refrigerate for around 15 minutes.
  • Remove the dough from the fridge, unwrap, then on a lightly floured surface, roll out until around 1cm thickness.
  • Cut into fingers (or rounds if you wish!), make a pattern with a fork if you fancy it, then space evenly on the baking tray. Chill for another 20 minutes.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or until starting to turn golden brown. They may still be a little soft to the touch, but will harden while cooling.
  • Remove from the tray onto a wire rack and leave to cool. (And find it hard to resist eating immediately).
  • Enjoy!

Cinnamon honey shortbread

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I'm Stacey, in my (very) early 30's, from a small village in North Lincolnshire. I'm a stay at home mum to two boys and a mental dog. You'll find me blogging mainly about food & lifestyle with a bit of random thrown in.

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  1. Very annoying that your recipes have metric measurements. The recipes sound good but I have no way to convert those. Too bad!

    1. Hi Linda, thanks for taking the time to comment. Many apologies for the metric measurements, I’m in the UK so that’s what I use! There are plenty of converters on the www and google 🙂

  2. Hi Stacey, I love cinnamon but I don’t see myself anything other than pure honey. Is it okay to add ground cinnamon to the recipe, (as I said I love cinnamon!) and if so then how much?
    Thank you!

    1. Hi, thanks for taking the time to comment! I’m sure ground cinnamon would be fine – I think just a sprinkle would suffice as it’s quite a mild flavour of it!

  3. Hi!
    The shortbread cookies look scrumptious!

    Could you help me out with the U.S. equivalent of measurements (ie. cups, tablespoons and teaspoons)

    Thanks so much.

    1. Hi Pam, thanks for your comment and apologies for the delay in replying – I’ve been away with my family for our spring break!

      As far as I can work out, the measurements are 1/2 cup butter, 4 1/2 tbsp honey, and 1 1/2 cups flour. I hope that helps!

  4. Thank you

  5. I haven’t tried these yet but I was so surprised by Linda’s comment and then Pam’s more polite request that I had to comment. Yummly is full of recipes in US cups etc and I would not think to complain about it, just work it out myself. The internet has many conversion tools. There are so many recipes I have seen which include American ingredients that I have no idea what they are and no way of obtaining them, but that is what makes finding out about other cultures interesting. Translating some of the terms is also interesting – zucchini = courgette, eggplant = aubergine. Isn’t learning about other people’s food and culture what Yummly is all about? If you’re not open to that then, to quote Linda, “too bad”!

    1. Thank you – that’s what I do too. If the measurements on a recipe are different to what I usually use, I just use a conversion site! 😉

  6. Hi, do you think this will work with gluten free flour?

    1. Hi, I’ve only ever used gluten free flour in baking cupcakes so I’m not sure, but I guess it’s worth a try!

  7. Goodness! Why would anyone complain about the measurements in our day and age? I’m a whopping 62 year old Yankee girl and even I can figure out how to google to translate into our US measurement system! (I prefer, however, to use the metric system: after watching baking shows and realizing that measuring carefully is a recipe for baking success I bought a scale and it can do both metric and the US system of cups/ounces etc.. It’s wonderful and I recommend that to any who are struggling to convert.)

    I can’t wait to give these a try! (And I can’t wait to get back to the UK too. ❤️)

  8. Shame on you commenters who are complaining about metric measurements ! If you are looking at these recipes online then you have many conversion sites online to help you make the conversions. Your baking will actually be better if you weigh your ingredients anyway. I think Stacey was very gracious. Stop your whining and figure it out for yourself ! Thanks for the recipe Stacey … it’s now my go-to shortbread recipe.

  9. These look so MN delicious. Conversion is easy. Stacy was very polite in her response. Hope to make these this week. No cinnamon honey, so will use just a sprinkle.

  10. Hi Linda the internet can convert , no problems.

  11. I’ve been searching for a healthy snack for my daughter and was very happy to find this recipe. Can’t wait to try it tonight 🙂

  12. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe, I had been looking for a shortbread recipe that used honey rather than sugar. I have made it with plain honey and am so pleased with the result! I will be making more of this shortbread. Marvellous!

    1. So glad you liked it! 🙂

  13. Definitely going to give this recipe a try thank you

    1. Thanks Jo, hope you enjoy!

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